The future is in your hands

In order to ensure your family's financial health for years to come, learn the basics of investing, apply technology, and engage in cooperative economics.

and management expertise to take advantage of developments in the brave new world ahead.

Treat yourself as a valuable commodity. In the new book Future Wealth by Stan Davis and Christopher Meyer (Harvard Business School Press, $27.50), one forecast is that your labor and intellectual capital will be bankable and tradable in the future. You have only to look at entertainers such as James Brown and Ashford and Simpson, who securitized the royalties of their music by issuing bonds, or the Netpreneurs who leveraged their intellect into billion-dollar public offerings. Look for a future where employers will not only seek the résumés of talented employees and independent contractors, but also buy shares in them.

But you don’t have to be so grandiose. As a part of Generation 1099, it will pay to market your skills outside of your 9-to-5. A simple fact of life is that to build wealth, you can’t give everything to the company store. Use your skills set or special niche to supplement your income. Companies will continue to pay a pretty penny for expertise and excellence. to provide yourself with the additional funds that, in turn, can be used for investing, use such low overhead activities as consulting, writing, making speeches, and selling your services through the Net (don’t forget to register yourself as a domain name). Better yet, if a fledgling company seems like a candidate for the public market in the future, get compensated in stock options. Also, gain the tax advantages of incorporation.

Another tactic is to seek out novice entrepreneurs and make an investment in their talents and identify resources
to help them grow their enterprises. You don’t have to be a venture capitalist to get in on the ground floor of the next big thing.

Engage in cooperative economics and collective wealth-building strategies. It’s important to buy black, but don’t forget to invest black. Today, there are more black professional money managers than ever before. In fact, we unveiled a list of black asset managers in our June issue to track their explosive growth. And in the future, expect even more African Americans to participate in every nook and cranny of the financial marketplace. Asserted Ted Shaw, associate director-counsel of the NAACP Legal Defense Fund on a be panel on affirmative action: “We have talked about the death of affirmative action, but African Americans haven’t fully exploited the home front. We need to use the services of other black businesses and professionals.”

In fact, the be Board of Economists have stated that the dollar in the black community “does not turn over once as compared to other ethnic communities.” That means that African Americans are not effectively leveraging the $500 billion plus in total money income. So, as you invest your hard-earned dollars and seek professional expertise, tap the top black accountants, tax attorneys, and investment advisors. Also, look at viable, publicly owned black businesses and mutual funds, which have outperformed the market and companies within their sectors, as part of your asset mix.

In keeping with

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